On the Eastern boundary of Europe, a razor wire fence is stretched across Georgia. It marks the territories cut off by the Russian invasion of 2008. Arbitrarily traced through the country, the line has become a cause of constant violations of human rights and international law. Its creeping movement further into Georgia has taken lives and destroyed communities over the last decade. While the structure itself causes much harm, it hides away from the world’s view the inside of the occupied land. Where, in an attempt to destroy the evidence of once resident population, whole settlements are being wiped out.
Born in a city now behind the occupation line, Irakli Sabekia has witnessed the expansion of the overwhelming force into the country since the nineties. In the project Voicing Borders, he spotlights the reality hidden behind the razor wire boundary. The project’s two components tell the story of the problem and demonstrate Irakli’s approach to the ongoing injustice. In an interactive projection installation dedicated to the documentation of the destroyed villages, viewer can unveil their location and the structure by casting a shadow on the projection. While the second part of the project targets the razor wire fence itself. Through a subversive transformation, the very weapon of occupation becomes a tool for voicing an objection to it. Specially designed radio transmitter connects to the razor wire fence and uses it as an antenna. Through this antenna, broadcasting on a frequency of conventional radio receivers, it transmits a short Morse code message. The message states the names of the disappeared villages and their geographic coordinates.
The project was awarded the 'Melkweg Prize' at the Design Academy Eindhoven Graduation Show 2019 and was Nominated for the 'STARTS Prize' 2020